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iHub Entrepreneur Development Series Helps Companies Navigate the Startup World

Dan Rose, UML alum and senior counsel at Foley & Lardner, speaks at the entrepreneur series workshop.
Dan Rose, UML alum and senior counsel at Foley & Lardner, speaks at the entrepreneur series workshop.

By Stephanie Guyotte

George Peters has been through it all in his 20-plus-year career as inventor. While he most recently has found success with his company, Kettle Pizza, which he cofounded with Al Contarino, Peters is not afraid to share the trials and tribulations he’s gone through over the years.

Peters shared those stories with budding entrepreneurs as part of the Innovation Hub Haverhill’s Entrepreneur Development Series kick off workshop called “Idea to Opportunity, Creating a Viable Business.” Peters’ experiences creating products, seeking patents – and getting denied, offered attendees a personal look at what it takes to turn an idea to a successful business.

With Peters’ presentation serving as the launch, the series continues monthly focusing on a different topic relevant to starting or growing a business. The iHub launched this series to help entrepreneurs in the Greater Haverhill region access resources, gain valuable information, and grow their network.

The series continues Wednesday, April 10 with Raise It, Structure It, Manage It: Understanding Financing and Accounting. This program will unpack money management, accounting and finances with expert speaker Stephen “Zam” Zamierowski, managing director at Deloitte.

Zamierowski is a speaker, reviewer, judge and mentor for several local entrepreneurial programs including the MIT Enterprise Forum, CleanTech Open, Mass Technology Transfer Center, Mass Clean Energy Council, Tufts University and Harvard Business School. One of his passions is helping entrepreneurs tell their story in a way that moves the listener to action, whether they are a potential investor, customer, team member or advisor.

Additional workshops addressing branding/sales and strategic partnering are planned for May and June. The events have been held at the iHub Haverhill and have attracted students, entrepreneurs and small business owners from the Greater Merrimack Valley region.

Previous workshops addressed legal issues for startups including company formation, intellectual property, equity and patents. Experts from international law firm Foley and Lardner offered valuable insight to guide startups away from common mistakes founders often make, such as giving away too much equity, violating employment laws, and skimping on legal documents.

“I found the entrepreneur series of workshops recently held at the Haverhill Innovation Hub to be a great source of information regarding startup business and legal issues,” said Robert Paugh, founder of DSPW and an iHub member. 

“The attorneys from Foley & Lardner provided relevant presentations and took time to answer questions in an informal setting without any hard sell or pressure. For people coming from northern MA or southern NH iHub Haverhill is an easily accessible venue with parking that does not require a trip into Boston.”